Canadian Money Forum banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm currently planning on studying abroad in Australia for about 4-5 months. My question is, what is the best way to transfer about $8000 there.

Should I do a wire transfer? If so what are the fees like? I think my credit union, Coast Capital, charges like 2.5% on their exchange rates.

Or should I put an $8000 payment on my Coast Desjardins Visa (which charges 1.8% on exchange rates) and then do daily cash advances, $2500 at a time, till I reach $8000. I believe that by doing that extra payment, it should stop me from getting charged interest on the cash advance. And then I can put the cash in a bank there. Will that even work? Or are there some fees that I am not seeing in relation to that?

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,197 Posts
Ask your bank. Not the local branch (where I have found tellers are fountains of misinformation about international transactions), but the main office in your city. However a small credit union may not have good international banking connections.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
You can open a bank account in Australia and check with RBC or any other big banks. My wife recently transferred some money to her sister who has a South Korean bank account and was only dinged $20 by RBC via its international remittance program.

It's hassle-free, secure and the fee is probably less than Western Union or other foreign money transfer services.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1 Posts
Hi there,

Transferring money into an Australian account directly from your high street bank can be costly, especially if you are transferring $8,000 – they regularly charge commission fees, transfer charges, and you will probably incur receiving fees from the foreign bank too.

Using a currency specialist gives you more options, and can help you get a better rate. This is particularly crucial at the moment, given that the Australian Dollar has fallen today at the prospect of a hung parliament. You might also want to consider some of the types of contracts available through foreign exchange brokers – for example you can fix today’s rate for up to two years, if you are going to make your transaction in six months.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,883 Posts
You can open a bank account in Australia and check with RBC or any other big banks. My wife recently transferred some money to her sister who has a South Korean bank account and was only dinged $20 by RBC via its international remittance program.

It's hassle-free, secure and the fee is probably less than Western Union or other foreign money transfer services.
In this case, the exchange fees are charged by the receiving bank. It might be a better rate than using an ATM but don't count on it. Check with the receiving bank.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
I know that ING Direct operates in both Canada and Australia... maybe you could inquire with them what it would cost to have your funds made available to you through their Australian division?

I've also read on various RFD threads that XEtrade has pretty good transfer rates, and if you're willing to wait for electronic fund transfers to process, you could get some AUD deposited in an Australian account without any fees (besides the spread on the exchange). For an amount like $8000, I think the spread would be around 1.5%, which beats all the big banks. Read this thread for more details.

Wouldn't hurt to get a quote from knightsbridgefx.com, but I don't really know much about them. Be sure to inquire about methods of fund transfers, as your bank will charge you to send email money transfers or wire transfers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
Paypal has huge spreads on the exchange rates. I haven't used it in quite a while, but I remember being pissed off on how much I lost when I bought and returned something that was in USD (you lose on the purchase and lose more on the refund).

I'm fairly certain it's better to pay a bank's exchange rate than Paypal. If you do decide to go the bank route, just write a cheque to yourself and deposit it in the Australian account. If you can't afford to wait for a cheque to clear, use a bank draft instead. Still much cheaper than an international wire transfer.

The Desjardins Visa method sounds like an interesting idea... but call them and confirm that you won't pay fees on the cash advances even when you pre-pay the account. I know my parents do this all the time on their CIBC visa, but they are charged $5 per transaction so they usually withdraw large amounts of the foreign currency at once.
My Capital One mastercard charges a fee of 1% of the amount, minimum $5 max $10. According to this chart maintained by Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, Desjardins does not have any fee for cash advances. But you should confirm this just in case, as the chart was last updated November '09. The other advantage to using this method is that you can exchange just what you need, as you need it. So if you only spend $7000, then you didn't have to pay to transfer the other $1000 to AUD and later back to CAD.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
429 Posts
This may sound strange, but why not just carry it to Australia? It's less than $10,000 USD. Or if you're concerned, write an international money order to yourself.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
If it's just a one time thing it might not be worth it to set up an account, but I need to transfer funds to euros fairly regularly and I found XE.com to be a cheaper and quite convenient route once the accounts are set up to send and receive the money.
From my TD account it's set up as a bill payment, and on the receiving end it's a EFT payment to a bank account there. There's no fees, and their rates are better than the banks.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top